Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Calories in Coffee

If there is one food item that the medical pundits just can't decide is good or bad for us, it has to be coffee. One day they will tell you that coffee makes you tense and can cause heart problems, while the next they may tell you that it brings down cholesterol and people who drink coffee live longer. However, if there is one thing that is true, it is that the best thing about the black nectar is that there are no calories in coffee - that is if you drink it black, which unfortunately not a lot of us do any more.

Is Coffee Healthy?

If you are starting your day with a single cup of coffee, or even two cups, then you have nothing to worry about. You are giving your body a nice, healthy dose of caffeine to get your system up and running. However, there are some coffee habits that are not so good, such as drinking coffee all day long because you didn't sleep the night before, or drinking coffee that might be full of more calories than you might think.

How Many Calories Are There In Your Coffee?

The calories in a cup of black coffee are basically zero, but the trouble comes when we start adding things to it. If you are enjoying a cup of coffee with cream and sugar in the morning, then you are consuming anywhere from 75 to 100 calories per cup. That may not be enough calories to catch your interest until you think that if you cut back on that, you could save around 10 pounds worth of calories over the course of a year. You can do this simply by changing to artificial sweeteners and fat free milk.

What About Those Specialty Drinks?

Calories in coffee really start to add up when you head out to Starbucks. The calories in coffee from the specialty shops like this can start at well over 100 calories and end up being more than what you might get in a cheeseburger. For example, if you walk into Starbucks and order a Venti Mocha Frappuccino, you will be looking at 405 calories, and that is before they put on the whipped cream!

Even a mocha made with non-fat milk and no whipped cream could still clock in at around 350 calories, which is much more than most people eat in a single breakfast. You could have eggs, toast, and bacon for that number of calories.

What Should You Do?

If you are trying to save calories in coffee each day, then it goes without saying that staying away from the coffee shops is the first thing that you can do. Not only will you save hundreds of calories each day, but you might also end up saving hundreds of dollars each month. Those big, tasty drinks are not only full of calories, but they are pricey, and if you add up what you are paying over the course of a year, you might be able to afford a pretty good vacation.

Once you start making your coffee at home and drinking it there or bringing it to work, you can save calories in coffee simply by substituting your sugar with an artificial sweetener. If you like milk or cream in your coffee, just make sure that it is non-fat. You can also buy non-fat whipped cream which is very low in calories, and that will give you a coffee shop experience with a lot fewer calories. By watching your calories in coffee, you will have a lot more calories to spend on more worthwhile foods during the day.

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